8 Cruise Ship Specialty Dining Options Worth Trying

Eating whatever you want, whenever you want on a cruise ship is one of the few times in life where you don’t have to feel guilty about indulging. Sure while it’s fun to try out the many cruise ship buffets, what’s even better is to try some of the food that you can only get while onboard certain cruise ships.

Here are 8 Cruise Ship Specialty Dining Options Worth Trying:

Princess Cruises – Sabatini’s
This is Princess’ Italian restaurant which features pasta and seafood specialties.  In typical Italian fashion dinner is in several courses with antipasti, pasta, the main course and dinner. You can taste unique items such as the Faioli Bianchi e Cozze (white bean and black mussel soup,) the baked striped bass in zucchini crust over toasted polenta or the roasted veal with mushroom raougt and a Barolo glaze. Cover charge is $25 per person.

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Celebrity Eclipse’s Qsine
The Qsine restaurant takes items known as comfort foods and puts a new spin on them. This is perfect for those that want to try something new without going too far outside of their comfort zone. Food options include sliders or guacamole that you can make yourself, Persian kebobs and sushi lollipops. Guests can view the menu via IPad. The dress code is somewhat casual and the reservations can be booked up to 4 days before the sailing date. Meals cost $45.

8 Cruise Ship Specialty Dining Options Worth Trying

Royal Caribbean’s 150 Central Park
Not many cruise ships can claim to have a James Beard award winning chef that creates its menu. At Royal Caribbean’s 150 Central Park restaurant, chef Michael Schwartz has created a fabulous menu filled with dishes like Pan Roasted Pompano and Grilled Tuna. The150 Central Park experience consists of six courses that are just large enough for each guest to get a taste of the dish. There is also an explanation behind each one. There is a charge of $40 per diner.

Oceania Cruises’ Red Ginger
The menus at Red Ginger are created by master chef Jacques Pepin. It features Asian foods in a contemporary style. Dishes include miso-glazed sea bass. There is no charge for travelers to eat at Red Ginger while on board ship. This restaurant can be found on both the Riviera and Marina Ships.

Holland America’s Pinnacle Grill
If you are on a Holland America cruise ship you will be able to dine at a Pinnacle Grill as this restaurant is on the entire fleet of ships. This fine dining restaurant is inspired by chef and author Rudi Sodamin. This restaurant can be described in one word: innovative. The menu is varied with everything from lobster macaroni and cheese to spicy chicken coconut soup. Meals cost $10 per diner for lunch or $25 per diner for dinner. For those that want to take part in the restaurant’s once per sailing event called Le Cirque, the charge is $39 per diner.

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Disney’s Remy
Chef’s Scott Hunnel and Arnaud Lallement create the menus for the Remy. Diners can choose to order a la carte or from of the two tasting menus. This upscale dining experience has dishes like Alaskan king crab cannelloni or smoked bison with melted fennel and leeks. Wine pairings are available for $24 per diner. This restaurant can be rather pricey since it costs $75 per person. Despite the fact that Disney Cruises are known for being geared around kids, at the Remy adults can get some much needed alone time over a good meal if they wish. This restaurant can be found on Disney’s Fantasy and Dream ships.

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Norwegian Cruise Line’s Moderno Churrascaria
The extraordinary culinary team onboard Norwegian’s cruise ships create this menu. Diners will begin their meal by visiting the rather large salad bar that doesn’t just feature the standard fare of lettuce, carrots and tomatoes. It also has meats, cheeses and prepared salads like French bean salad. The main dishes consist of meats that are carved tableside, chicken perfectly seasoned and wrapped in bacon or ribs that have been roasted in red wine. For such exquisite menu options the fee is relatively inexpensive as just $20 per diner. The Moderno Churrascaria can be found on Norwegian’s Pride of America, Breakaway, Jewel, Getaway, Jade, Star, Dawn, Pearl, Epic, Sun or Gem’s ships.


Regent Seven Seas’ Prime 7
The culinary team of Regent Seven Seas are the masterminds behind the Prime 7 menu. This restaurant is perfect for those that want a scrumptious, well-seasoned steak while onboard a cruise. In addition to their 6 ounce filet mignons they have crab cakes, porterhouse steaks and lobster tails. To end the meal many diners opt for a sampling of the 14-layer Valrhona chocolate cake that has been carefully roasted in a pistachio sauce. Surprisingly there is no charge to dine at this restaurant, but they do reserve the right to only allows diners to eat at it once per sailing in order to allow all the passengers the chance to dine there. Prime 7 is open only for dinner and is available on the Voyager, Mariner and Navigator ships.

 

Of all the cruise ship, Norwegian Cruise Line Freestyle Dining has been a favorite of cruisers.  You can eat when you want, where you want – table for 2 or large table to you can socialize with several free and specialty dining options. Their newer ships the NCL Getaway and NCL Escape  have everything from Cuban food and an Irish pub, to a Italian, a French Bistro a seafood restaurant who’s menu was designed by Geoffrey Zakarian.   Over 27 different dining options, 11 of which are complimentary.  The choice is yours.

Now Royal Caribbean has announced Dynamic Dining on the Quantum of the Seas. We invite you to watch the video for more details.  The same dining options will be available on the Anthem of the Seas Cruise ship when she comes out in 2015.

 

Oktoberfest

oktoberfest-184205775Oktoberfest is perhaps the largest festival in the world that has beer as its main theme. This yearly festival is held in Munich, Germany and will be taking place from September 20th to October 5th. It’s estimated that at least 6 million people will attend this yearly event.

History
Oktoberfest started in 1810 and was a celebration of the Bavarian Prince’s and the Saxon-Hildburghausen Princess’ marriage. Everyone in the city of Munich was invited to be a part of the five day festivities that were taking occurring. Anniversary celebrations took place throughout the years with it growing by leaps and bounds every year. Traditionally the last day of Oktoberfest is set to occur on the last Sunday in the month of October.

Fun Facts

Oktoberfest used to only take place during the month of October, but was moved to begin in the month of September because the weather is usually better.

It was extended two extra days in 2006 because the festival fell during a national holiday.

Festivities do not officially begin on the opening day of the festival until the mayor opens a beer barrel after a 12 gun salute and states in Austro-Bavarian “It’s tapped!”. The first beer is then given to the State of Bavaria’s Minister-President by the mayor.

Oktoberfest has been canceled 24 times throughout the years because of wars and epidemics.

On the festival’s first Sunday around 7,000 people perform in The Costume and Riflemen’s Procession.

Oktoberfest may start out slowly in the morning, but as the day progresses so does the level of noise. By the end of the night it’s not uncommon to see people dancing on tables and singing with mugs of beer in their hands.

Before each band takes a break they give a toast called “ein Prosit der Gemütlichkeit” that’s dedicated to being relaxed and content.

A wide variety of music can be heard during Oktoberfest including German folk music, disco and rock songs.

During Oktoberfest more than 1.5 million gallons of beer is consumed. German beer is much stronger and darker than American beer. It is called Märzen and around 6% alcohol in it. Only four ingredients are allowed in it when it is brewing: malt, barley, hops and yeast.

With the high amount of beer that is drank at the festival it’s not surprising that people tend to get a little tipsy and lose some of their belongings. Some of the oddest things lost have been dentures, electric wheelchairs and Viking helmets.

Only 6 breweries in Munich are allowed to serve beer during Oktoberfest: Hofbräu, Augustiner, Hacker-Pschorr, Spaten, Paulaner and Löwenbräu.

The one liter stein that the beer is served in is called the Maß, and it can cost between 9 and 10 euros dependent on the beer.

Food is just as popular as the beer at Oktoberfest. Around 480,000 chickens are roasted and 200,000 pork sausage pairs are eaten. Other festival favorites include potato dumplings, duck, sauerkraut and a variety of breads and desserts.

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Waitresses have to be able to carry 10 steins in order to serve beer at Oktoberfest. The most amount of steins ever carried was 19 that were completely full and weighed about 5 pounds each.

Unfortunately brawls will happen, especially in large crowds. One of the most popular weapons that is used is a beer stein. In 2013, 58 people suffered a beer stein related injury during Oktoberfest.

There’s an app for just about everything, including Oktoberfest. The app allows user to input data like their weight, height and how many beers they’ve consumed and it will estimate their blood alcohol content.

Don’t be surprised if you find yourself drinking next to a teenager at Oktoberfest. The legal age to drink in Germany is 16. Teens as young as 14 can drink if they are accompanied by an adult.

Guests who visit the entire grounds of Oktoberfest will walk about 103 acres.

Many attendees try to take their beer mug home with them. However, these mugs actually belong to the beer hall that they go it from. So many beer mugs have been stolen in the past that security guards are placed throughout certain entrances just to be on the lookout for people trying to sneak off with mugs. Around 226,000 people tried to get away with this last year. Many of them were charged with theft.

 

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